By peoplestaff225
August 27, 2009 02:00 PM

As summer draws to a close, millions are preparing for the upcoming school year and that means back-to-school shopping is in full effect! Footwear is often high on that list, but for many underprivileged children and their parents, new shoes are viewed as a luxury — not a necessity. Soles4Souls, an international charity which provides free footwear to those in need, is working hard to eliminate that statistic.

To that end, it has partnered with the Opry Mills Mall in Nashville, Tenn. for a “Shoes4School” shoe drive, whereby shoppers who donate a new pair of shoes receive a coupon book to use at the mall. If you’re not a local but still want to contribute, you’re in luck. Some familiar CBB faces — like Ashlee Simpson-Wentz, mom to 9-month-old Bronx Mowgli, and Amy Grant and Vince Gill, parents to 8-year-old Corrina — have contributed autographed shoes for an auction running now through August 31.

Amy offers up a bold pair of knee-high leather boots by Yves Saint Laurent in size 8, while Ashlee contributed a more demure pair of size 6 Tory Burch green ballet flats. Bidding begins at just $25!

In the Appalachia Mountain region of the United States, various Indian reservations, domestic abuse shelters, inner-city hospitals, homeless shelters and in the wake of national disasters like Hurricane Katrina, Soles4Souls is a strong presence.

It also provides two pair of shoes for up to 6,000 children who attend one of 140 camps in the United States that focus on abused and neglected children.

Their work isn’t limited to American shores, however, for Soles4Souls — a recipient of The Independent Charities Seal of Excellence — has provided assistance to more than 60 countries around the globe.

To find out how you can help, click here.

In addition to Corrina, Amy is mom to Matthew Garrison, 22, Gloria ‘Millie’ Mills, 20, and Sarah Cannon, 17, with ex-husband Gary Chapman, while Vince is dad to Jennifer Jerene, 27, with ex-wife Janis Oliver.